Opening Pandora’s Box, & Summer Reading

Yesterday, my son noticed some boxes in the top of his closet. Pushed to the side, behind a mountain of play clothes, masks, light sabers and shields — they’ve been up there for a few years, forgotten. Because it was a lazy Sunday afternoon, I decided to pull them down and discover what was inside of these “lost” boxes. For any boy, what we found was a treasure trove, a Pandora’s box filled to the brim with delights – mostly transformers from the 1980s. My sons eyes grew big as watermelons as we carefully unpacked them, with each one exclamations of “Wow! Mama look at this!” as if Santa himself had made a stop to our house in June. It was the kind of find that I’d like to have saved for a rainy day, but once the box was opened, I knew there was no going back!

While he set to work engineering together (and apart again) the transformers, I sat down with the second box. Because it had my mother’s name on it, I knew it came from my childhood home. As I lifted the lid, I felt a rush of joy at what I saw. Inside was a collection of some of children’s stories that I had written, sticker books and drawings I had made, and children’s books that I remembered from my childhood bookshelf. Some were so stuck together that I had to pry them apart, and many are aged, tattered and faded. But to me, they are pure gold. I could have sat with them all day, but instead chose a few to put on my bedside table, a few to give to my kids, and a few to donate.

Summer Reading Programs and Book Lists:


The theme this summer is “On your mark, get set, READ!” My kids and I have participated in local reading programs together since they were babies, and I’m a firm believer that there is no better summer activity to make time for! Here’s a link to our local program: 

Scholastic has an online reading challenge titled “Be a Reading Superhero.”

Barnes and Noble stores allow kids to earn a free book by completing a summer reading journal.

Here is a recommended summer reading list from the Association for Library Service to Children, for kids birth through 8th grade.

Author Kate Dicamillo is the 2016 National Summer Reading Champion. Check out this link for her top 10 reasons to read this summer and a recommended reading list from her.


Do you know of any summer reading programs or challenges that you’d like to share? If so, please tell me below in the comments! Have any summer reading recommendations for kids or adults? Comment! I’m on the lookout for my next beach/pool read…

Happy Summer Reading!